Compact sedan gets extra trim with more goodies

By virtue of its name, Hyundai’s new Elantra Value Edition doesn’t exactly scream “exclusive!,” doesn’t it? Well, it’s really less of an exclusive and more of a new trim level that falls right into the Korean automaker’s identity as a brand grounded on value. That or it simply thought the Accent Value Edition was such a good idea that it decided to extend it to the Elantra. Either way, the Elantra Value Edition is here and just like its Accent counterpart, it gets a generous amount of new bits and pieces and a corresponding uptick in price.

But hey, Hyundai says there’s value to be hand with the Elantra Value Edition so let’s run with that. To its credit, the automaker takes “value” pretty seriously, which is why this new trim level is full of some pretty sweet add-ons, particularly for a car of the Elantra’s status that isn’t typically on the receiving end of features like heated front seats and tech features like Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross-traffic Alert and Lane Change Assist.

Not only does the Elantra Value Edition boast of these items, they’re also just a small taste of the many other new goodies that Hyundai threw into the model. There is a lot of value to the Elantra Value Edition and the car’s price of $20,250 is just $3,100 more expensive than the entry level Elantra SE trim. More importantly, at least according to Hyundai, the new features of the Value Edition saves buyers $1,215 compared to getting them all as extra accessories on other trim levels.

Say what you will about the absurdity of a trim level being named “Value Edition,” but at least in this case, Hyundai made sure that the “value” it’s touting extends past the model’s name.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Hyundai Elantra Value Edition.

What makes the Hyundai Elantra Value Edition special

2017 Hyundai Elantra Value Edition High Resolution Exterior
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First, let’s check out what makes the Hyundai Elantra Value Edition “special.” It’s a loose definition, sure, but to be fair to Hyundai, the value-added upgrades are worth their name, especially when you compare them to what the competitors are offering.

Most of the upgrades can be found on the interior of the car with only notable exterior upgrades being the LED daytime running lights, a new sunroof and the Hands-Free Smart trunk release. Every other feature of the Elantra Value Edition can be found once you get inside the car. I’ve already touched on the heated front seats, but the new trim level also adds a power driver’s seat, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, an auto-dimming rearview mirror with Homelink and compass, and a proximity key with electronic push button start.

On the tech front, the Elantra Value Edition gets a seven-inch display audio system that’s compatible to both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a Bluetooth hands-free phone system, Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross-traffic Alert, Lane Change Assist, and a Dual Automatic Temperature Control system with its own clean air ionizer and auto defogger.

2017 Hyundai Elantra Value Edition High Resolution Exterior
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2017 Hyundai Elantra Value Edition High Resolution Exterior
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Most of the upgrades can be found on the interior of the car with only notable exterior upgrades being the LED daytime running lights, a new sunroof and the Hands-Free Smart trunk release.

The addition of the Value Edition to the Elantra’s lineup is largely Hyundai’s way of creating a bridge variant between the entry level Elantra SE and the Elantra Eco. That plays into Hyundai’s hands because it not only adds a fifth trim to the Elantra family, but this fifth trim helps Hyundai draw level with Honda, which itself has five different variants of the 2017 Civic sedan. In fact, if you compare the Elantra Value Edition with the Civic EX, you’ll notice that both models come with a few similarities, mostly on the front of features and technologies.

For instance, the Civic EX also has remote engine start and a host of driver assist technology, including a Lane Keeping Assist System, Adaptive Cruise Control, and Honda’s new LaneWatch system, which helps drivers survey the field in the next lane through a small camera that turns on and displays live video on the Civic’s Display Audio Touch Screen.

Honda’s got some of its own fancy new tech toys on the Civic EX but the car’s interior doesn’t have the same level of creature comforts compared to the Elantra Value Edition. For instance, the front heated seats are only available for the next-level trim, the Civic EX-T, while the leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob only appear on the Civic EX-L trim. It does come with an Automatic Climate Control system, although if you get the EX-T, you can avail of the more sophisticated Dual-Zone Automatic Climate Control system.

2017 Hyundai Elantra Value Edition High Resolution Interior
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Every other feature of the Elantra Value Edition can be found once you get inside the car.

In terms of pricing, the Civic EX starts at $21,140 while the EX-T and E-XL goes up to $21,500 and $23,800, respectively. The gaps in prices aren’t that significant, but they’re all still at least $1,000 more than the $20,250 Elantra Value Edition.

Touch base on the Toyota Corolla, another rival to the Hyundai Elantra, and you’ll notice a peculiar thing about how Toyota priced them. Whereas Hyundai created a $5,000 gap between the entry level Elantra SE ($17,150) and the range-topping Elantra Limited ($22,350), Toyota’s pricing for the Corolla trims are much more compact, albeit with a much higher starting price than the Elantra. The Corolla SE, for instance, starts at $21,665, which is a little over $1,000 more expensive than the Elantra Value Edition. Here’s the rub with the Corollas: all succeeding trim options are actually almost identical in prices. Take the Corolla XLE for example. It’s technically the next higher trim to the Corolla SE, but the price difference between the two models is just $160 at $21,825. Move up to the Corolla 50th Anniversary Edition and the price increases by just $75 at $21,900.

In terms of features, driver and front passenger heated seats are only available with the XLE trim and the range-topping $22,680 XSE trim. Moreover, Toyota’s Entune Audio Plus with Connected Navigation App multimedia system comes as standard in all trim levels, but once again, only the XLE and XSE trims can get the Entune Premium Audio and Integrated Navigation and App Suite system. All variants of the Corolla also get smart key systems with push-button start and a leather-trimmed steering wheel, which itself is technically not wrapped like the ones being offered by Hyundai and Honda.

The common creature comforts among the Corolla variants tells us that with Toyota, the difference between getting one trim over the other is pretty inconsequential and it all likely boils down to what kind of "added" features you want in the sedan. The close prices of all trim options reflect that. It’s a good strategy to have because it affords customers a chance to really scope out what they want out of their Corollas, even though at the end of the day, they’ll still pay a little premium for getting one compared to getting Hyundai’s Elantra Value Edition.

That’s certainly an option, although so is getting the Elantra Value Edition and enjoy the extra dose of features it has that line up favourably compared to what you’re getting from Honda and Toyota at relatively lower prices. This is where Hyundai’s claim of saving $1,215 on the Elantra Value Edition will rear its head. And given the price differences, that amount is a big deal for those in the market for a compact sedan.

Press Release

Hyundai introduces the Value Edition Elantra to its line-up this month. The Value Edition adds a slew of options that increase comfort, convenience and safety to the car. Price for the new trim level is just $20,250 and provides $1,215 in value savings.

2017 Hyundai Elantra Value Edition High Resolution Exterior
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“It’s critically important to give our customers a wide variety of options so there’s an Elantra to meet their needs” said Mike Evanoff, Product Planning Manager. “The Value Edition lands at a real sweet spot on the spectrum of amenities and price tag.”

Elantra Value Edition features include:

Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross-traffic Alert and Lane Change Assist
LED daytime running lamps
Hands-free Smart Trunk release
Sunroof – power glass tilt and slide, safety one-touch
Heated front seats
7-inch Display Audio system with Android Auto™ and Apple CarPlay®
Power driver’s seat with lumbar adjust
Bluetooth® hands-free phone system
Dual automatic temperature control with clean air ionizer and auto defogger
Proximity key with electronic push button start
Auto-dimming rearview mirror with HomeLink® and compass
Leather shift knob
Leather wrapped steering wheel

2017 Hyundai Elantra Value Edition High Resolution Interior
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Adding more content at every trim level, standard features in the Elantra SE now include Bluetooth phone and audio capability as well as cruise control. To maximize convenience, steering-wheel phone and audio controls were also added. The Elantra Limited also benefits with standard High Intensity Discharge (HID) headlamps with Dynamic Bending Light, which adds more safety at a lower price-point. The all-new for 2017 Elantra, including its body made up of 53 percent high-strength steel and 2.0-liter Atkinson cycle engine, gives every trim level a rock solid foundation, then adds tremendous amounts of comfort, convenience, and safety features.

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